Disclaimer: Power Rangers in all their incarnations are Saban's. I just channel this stuff, though I do appreciate the unlimited mental access provided to AP's historical, contemporary and personal documentation, gratefully augmented, as always, from the Chronicles of St. Rovang. If Connections Three through Six ever get finished and posted, this whole series might make a lot more sense. Thanks for reading it.

More instant fanfic -- just add water. In this case, a WHOLE lot of water, like a bay full of it. I wrote most of this story in the hour after the premiere of PRLR, hoping to duplicate my feat with the first Connections, which was posted to afpr the same day as PRLG started -- kind of make it a tradition. But, sigh, real life intervened and it was days before I could get back to it. By then several of the ideas presented herein had been discussed on afpr and stories with similar themes have been posted at fanfic sites. It is good to know that great minds do tend to think alike! ^_^

Many, many thanks to Daniel and Dagmar for the beta read and the unqualified encouragement. Revisions have been made to accommodate information from the second episode.

Connections Seven -- Reflective Refractions
by Eva Beckwith

Private e-mail, addys encoded for security purposes,
TSP to AP. Date deleted.

Hi, sweetie --

I would have called as soon as I arrived, but it is so early where you are that I don't want to wake you if you're sleeping. I came "back" earlier than expected, and, no, I still don't completely understand the mechanics of how it happens. I'll write the official report after a good night's rest, but I know how you always emphasize recording first impressions, so I've jotted down notes, and even tried to reconstruct some of our conversations.

The "trip" itself was uneventful, but I don't think I will ever be comfortable using the portal com. Interdimensional crossing is one thing, but this jerry-built device for controlling time holes is something else entirely, at least in my uninformed technological opinion. Fortunately, the guy who devised the system was waiting right where he said he would be.

First, I know you will want the personal. He is looking very well - as always, and forever, I guess, youthful. I asked him how he had gotten away without appearing to age, given that he had been living in that timeline for at least two decades, or possibly even longer. He evaded answering my question on that subject, shrugging as he smiled that wistful smile of his, and replied that apparently his was a personality that did not stand out in a crowd. I was tempted to bop him one for putting himself down like that. You would think, after all this time and all that he has accomplished, his self esteem factor would be higher. But no, he is as self-effacing as ever, perhaps even more so, blending easily into the background as all these bright young energetic types go so busily about their duties.

The underwater base is simply amazing. You'd expect no less from the influential combination of Aquitian technology, the construction experience of Terra Venture, and the scientific and engineering research facilitated by the Kerovians. I was particularly reminded of TV when we traveled through transparent tunnel tubes that connect the underwater domes. Inner space and deep sea environments have some challenging similarities.

The infrastructure of support for this project is incredibly extensive, and must be equally expensive. A multitude of uniformed people were bustling around. It is apparently a quasi-military organization far more strictly regimented than GSA, with dozens of monitors being manned constantly. I tried to take it all in as he methodically described the functions of the various consoles, but truthfully all I was thinking about was what one solitary guy had managed to do by himself in the Power Chamber, with the aid of a kindly robot.

We watched the action on a monitor as the new team morphed for the first time and destroyed a monster. I still don't think that it is a good idea that their identities are known so publicly, especially after what happened to our friends on the Space team when they were forced to break one of the three basic rules, and I said so.

His response was, and here I quote, "I agree, but we are learning as we go along, and one result from the aftermath of the situation with Dark Spectre is to incorporate the support of the populace that is being protected. Most of this team is already well prepared to handle notoriety."

Then he astutely added, with a smile that reassured me more than anything that things were going according to schedule, that perhaps one member is even a little too well-prepared for enjoying the publicity.

I pointed out, with no apology on my part, and a lot of pride as well, that my relatives always have a tendency to shoot their mouths off, and that the team member in question was recruited for a reason, and not just for his dare-devil personality. And, I added tartly, wasn't the initial requirement for recruitment "teenagers with attitude"? Though this new team seems to be rather mature for adolescents. At least their families are already familiar with the idea of these guys putting their lives on the line. And they are receiving on-the-job training, whereas we always just had to wing it as we went along.

Speaking of relatives turned the conversation to the topic of my Mom and Dad, how their snooping through all those archaeological ruins really paid off, and how, from their discoveries and the clues they provided, we've been able to give the Earth time to get ready for this newest threat.

And yet such a fearsome threat that lay beneath our feet all the time. I asked him if Zordon himself knew of it, and that someday it would erupt. And again, sigh, he artfully evaded answering my question about just how much he had learned from our former mentor.

The expression on his face made me think back to the day that the six of us stood there in the PC before we received the Zeo powers -- when I asked Zordon what the Machine Empire wanted with us. Remember how Zordon stated that this solar system was the final link in a chain of galaxies that had been conquered by evil? And who it was, of course, that then said, "Once they conquer us, they'll have it all. There will be no one left that can defeat them." At the time, I thought he was talking about the Machine Empire. But now -- now I wonder if he knew, even then, before he ever gave up the Zeo Power to me, that Earth would always be the nexus for the fate of the universe.

Remember, too, how Zordon replied that he was correct, and that, "quite literally, the fate of the universe rests in your hands." Those precise words are engraved in my heart. Did Zordon, when he said "your hands" -- I wonder now if Zordon really meant all of us, or was directing that statement to one of us specifically?

I wanted to remind him of that day, but he was evidently tense about this whole subject, so I tried to lighten up the atmosphere by teasing him about this 'thing' he has about making zords out of vehicles. He reminisced a little about the very early days and the Rad Bug, and how somewhere some kid has that little toy remote-controlled car that was the prototype for the Turbozords. Maybe I should have asked him if he ever played with model trains!

He didn't deny to me about coming up with the overall plans for the project, and persuading Captain Mitchell of the necessity of building the base. Though another thing I don't understand is why the credit for designing and developing the actual morphers and zords is given to someone else, a rather charming and extremely intelligent young woman; but again the expression on his face warned me not to inquire too deeply about the situation.

Before I left, I told him he is amazing, because he is, which brought another wistful smile to his face. I asked if he was ever going to reveal to the good captain the whole truth about Mitchell and his daughter, a member of the new team, whose blonde loveliness reminds me so much of another of our very dear friends.

His response was only that Mitchell is doing a great job with what is a really rough assignment. "It's pretty much out of our hands now," he said. "All we can do is sit back and watch."

So I asked bluntly, "And just how many lifetimes are you going to spend saving the Earth?"

"As many as it takes, Tanya, as many as it takes," was his only reply.

Before he sent me back, though, I did get a commitment from him that he would come see us again -- some day.


I'd written the above enroute to the office. As late, or rather as early as it is here, I thought no one would be around, but, of course, I found Jason, obviously waiting for me. He was standing, his hands clasped before him, pensively staring out the large bay window of his private office as the sun rose. I know how much he had wanted to be the one to go, as much as you did too, and probably either of you would have been a better choice and would have pressed for clearer answers to the harder questions. But honestly, I'm so glad that I was the one who was specifically requested. I gave Jase a quick verbal summary of the situation, and was rewarded with a couple of days off to relax before I have to write the report. I hope to be home before you're up and reading the morning mail. See you in a few hours, my love!